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Math Help - Squaring the circle

  1. #1
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    Squaring the circle

    preface: I don't do math. I sometimes look up things in math and physics, and find things of interest. So, in the case of 'squaring the circle', I had a non-mathematical idea about solving this, in part because it has a 'physical' element: "in a finite number of steps, using a compass and straight edge".

    I am assuming both tools are marked with increments/there are some ways to determine length along the straight edge, and radius of compass arm separation.

    Given the following figure:

    Aren't the cardinal directions and the corners of the circle relative to concentric circles within and outside of the first circle?

    Or, another way: aren't the intersections of the square and circle plottable along the diameter?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Squaring the circle-squaring-circle.png  
    Last edited by ACultureMind; February 13th 2011 at 06:25 PM. Reason: difficulty with attaching image
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  2. #2
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    Squaring the circle is impossible...

    Squaring the circle - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prove It View Post
    Squaring the circle is impossible...

    Squaring the circle - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    You might notice the figure I included was an altered version of the one at that page. In fact, that page is where I first encountered the concept. Can you address the ideas I suggested above?
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    Quote Originally Posted by ACultureMind View Post
    I am assuming both tools are marked with increments/there are some ways to determine length along the straight edge, and radius of compass arm separation.
    No further comment need be made. In Euclidean proofs neither the straightedge nor the compass have markings on them. In fact it is assumed that the compass closes when taken away from the paper. So you can't measure off equal intervals or angles without using a construction.

    -Dan
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    Quote Originally Posted by topsquark View Post
    No further comment need be made. In Euclidean proofs neither the straightedge nor the compass have markings on them. In fact it is assumed that the compass closes when taken away from the paper. So you can't measure off equal intervals or angles without using a construction.

    -Dan
    That seems non-sensical, given the concern is each figure having the same surface area.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by ACultureMind View Post
    That seems non-sensical, given the concern is each figure having the same surface area.
    Sorry, those are the rules. See Compass and straightedge constructions - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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    Quote Originally Posted by theodds View Post
    Yeah, none of that is really making any sense. It needs to be framed in an holistic/top-down manner for me to get it.

    I need to know why something is, else it looks like a bunch of assertions I'm supposed to swallow like 'religion'.
    Last edited by mr fantastic; February 15th 2011 at 05:20 PM. Reason: Merged posts.
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    I think there is sufficient information for the OP to follow up on. This thread is closed.
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